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Little aptitude necessary to be an online quizmaster

by JOY SCHWABACH | September 25, 2021 at 2:08 a.m.

I sent my favorite 11-year-old a personality quiz based on her favorite Amazon series. Then I made a better one.

You've probably seen such quizzes on Facebook and elsewhere. Perhaps the most famous is from The New York Times. If you search on the phrase "New York Times quiz how y'all," it comes right up. It figures out where you're from based on the words you use. They marked me as a Californian, which is right on target, since I grew up there. One of the words that helped them decide was my use of "crawdad" instead of "crayfish." But they also figured I'd spent time in Reno, Nev., which I had, as a college student.

To get started making your own quiz, search on "Everything You Need To Know To Make A BuzzFeed Quiz." When finished, you get a link to share in an email, on Facebook or wherever. BuzzFeed quizzes don't let you advertise your business, however. If you want to do that, try the Wordpress plug-in "Forminator Contact Form."

To find personality quizzes, do a web search. I just searched on "How adventurous are you quiz," and found a fun one at Unfortunately, I had to take a survey on design software to get my results. According to them, I'm "hesitant."


I joined YouTube Premium for $12 a month because I couldn't stand the ads. Then a reader told me that on Firefox, you don't get ads even with the free version. The same is true of the Brave web browser, which I didn't realize until now.

Firefox is owned by a nonprofit organization called Mozilla. It's one of the few browsers that's not built on Google's Chromium system. Besides giving you an ad-free YouTube experience, it's great on privacy. A reader told me he loves their email system, from

I'd tried it out years ago but am enjoying it much more now. Of course, Gmail has a more advanced search system. But I love Thunderbird's shortcuts, and I'm seeing treasured email I haven't seen in years because of the way they display folders.


The maximum battery capacity on my 6-year-old iPhone is 93%. In other words, it no longer charges to 100%. But anything above 80% is good. You can check yours by tapping "Settings," then "Battery," then "Battery Health."

According to "How and Where to Replace Your iPhone Battery," an article at, if you replace an iPhone's battery yourself, it will lose its water resistance. So it makes sense to let Apple handle it. For older phones, battery replacement costs $49; for newer ones, it's $65.

You might want to enable "Low Power Mode" in Settings, so that the screen brightness dims automatically when the battery is getting low, and unnecessary features such as system animations are minimized. Another suggestion, under "Battery Health" on your iPhone, is to stop apps from automatically refreshing in the background. Go to "Background App Refresh" in "Settings," under "General." Also, consider turning off "Notifications" for any app you don't care about. These drain the battery too.

For Android phones, search on "Battery tips for Android" to get a whole slew of them from Google support. The usual suspects include turning off your screen sooner, which you can do quickly by pushing the power button; reducing screen brightness, and restricting apps with high battery usage. The Google support page shows you how.


When Android 11 came out in the summer, Android phones got a new privacy feature. Android 11 automatically revokes the permissions you granted an app when you first installed it if you haven't used it in a while.

In other news, the new Android 12 -- which I'm testing in the beta version -- has a handy new feature called "Notification History." Tap "Settings," then "Notifications." Mine said I'd had 42 notifications in the past 24 hours. Amazingly, all but three were letting me know my phone was now paired with my computer to let me answer text messages from my big keyboard. All right, I get it.

By the way, if you'd like to answer text messages on your computer, go to Next, on your phone, tap the "Messages" app. Tap the hamburger icon (three stacked lines) and then "Device Pairing." Now tap "QR code scanner" and hold up your phone to the website so your camera captures what looks kind of like a bar code on the screen. That's it! You're in. You should only have to do it once, but sometimes mine has to be reconnected.


"A Brief History of a Perfect Future: Inventing the World We Can Proudly Leave Our Kids by 2050" by best-selling authors Chunka Mui, Paul Carroll and Tim Andrews, just arrived in bookstores and online. It's a great guide to everything marvelous happening now, and reminds you how much has been achieved. For instance, Intel's first microprocessor in 1971 had 2,300 transistors costing $1 each. Today's transistors cost less than a millionth of a penny each.


"90-Year-Old Woman Walks Onto Dance Floor But No One Expected This." Search on that sentence for an amazing performance. lets you earn money by filling out surveys. I earned 87 cents worth of points in less than five minutes. But I can't cash them in until I earn $5 worth. A similar one is

Joy Schwabach can be reached by email at

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